In Focus
HR & EDUCATION | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong

Why some Hong Kong employers ditch flexible work policies

33% of employers worry that employees don't work hard as much.

Flexible working options have improved the attraction, retention, and engagement of employees, but some employers are ditching flexible work hours, Hays Plc revealed.

Hays cited a study Vodafone saying 33% of employers were concerned about employees not working as hard due to flexible working policies.

However, the study also found that 84% of employers in Hong Kong have enjoyed increased productivity, and 55% of Hong Kong organisations have seen increased profits.

Hays Hong Kong managing director Dean Stallard said, "In recent years many businesses have been able to offer their employees more flexibility in terms of how and when they work, but business leaders have begun asking if this makes good business sense and positively impacts team dynamics. This has led to cases of reduced flexible working options."

But Hays warns there is a danger in cutting back the flexibility offered to employees, as it has the potential to lead to tensions between managers and employees, in turn impacting loyalty, morale, engagement and retention and attraction.

Whilst flexible working offers employees the freedom to choose when and where they work, Hays said it can create communication challenges.

"There is also a level of trust that needs to be awarded to employees if they are not office based," Hays said.

Stallard added, "Digitalisation has allowed skilled workers to be able to work flexibly, efficiently and remotely, and there is growing demand for new roles within this evolving landscape. Looking ahead, organisations will be able to focus more on adapting their workforce in the face of a rapidly developing technological landscape." 

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